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[ARSCLIST] RealNetworks -- a horrid format from a horrible company

OK, now it's time for a short rant, one user's viewpoint. Archivists, please avoid using this awful format for your public-available content.

My favorite over-Internet radio show, Riverwalk Jazz, had a bonus thing -- excerpts from a 1973 WRVR
interview with John Hammond:

Unfortunately, no playback options except RealAudio. I smelled trouble immediately. Real player launches and
demands to be updated. No playing the clips unless it updates. OK, sigh, now I know there's trouble

Download takes 5 minutes. Install takes another 5 minutes. Then the post-install process, where Real
shows itself as the most goniff-y, classless company out there. I think all websites should be
strong told by their users and patrons not to use this format. I always send messages to webmasters because I feel that Real is truly
a horrible company.

You have to UNSELECT all the formats you don't want Real to take over. Instead of telling it what to
do, you have to take 5-10 minutes of CAREFULLY telling it what NOT to do, or you'll find that Real
takes over all audio and video formats -- and throws its bloated player and ads all over your
computer. Plus, you have to go into buried menus to turn off auto-update, and if you don't register
it under a fake e-mail, they will spam you whether you uncheck all the spam options or not. HATEFUL!

Oh, and they also default select the pay-to-use player on the install, so if you don't pay attention they'll be asking for credit card info. Yeah, over my dead body! And these goniffs sued Microsoft over alleged "monopoly" issues! At least Microsoft provides a player as part of the OS on 95% of desktops, not as some bloated, ad-laden, invasive, spamming option.

I sent a very strong e-mail to my friends at Riverwalk about using this format. Real should be
driven out of business or forced to change their spamming/invasive/toxicware ways.

By the way, Quicktime is the same kind of setup -- you have to carefully go thru several steps or it will also take over all your media formats. Big strike against Apple on that. Also, Quicktime used to be toxic to some Windows computers, although that's improved in recent versions. But I wouldn't have Quicktime on any of my computers if it wasn't required for iTunes.

-- Tom Fine

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